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The United States was the OECD country in which the unemployment rate fell the most in January, dropping by four tenths of a percentage point to 6.3% of the labor force as a sign of the momentum of the economic recovery, while in the euro zone as a whole it remained stable at 8.1% for the third consecutive month.
The other countries in which the unemployment rate fell the most in the first month of the year were Colombia (three tenths to 14.3%) and the Netherlands (also three tenths to 3.6%), according to statistics published on Wednesday by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
In fact, Colombia has experienced the steepest drop in its unemployment rate since the first quarter of 2020, at the height of the coronavirus crisis, when it rose to 20.5% and was the red lantern of the organization’s members.
In the United States, the same downward trend has also been very marked, since between April and June it had risen to 13.1 %. The decline there continued in February, with a drop of a further tenth of a percentage point to 6.2%.
In January, there were also significant reductions in unemployment in Spain (two tenths to 16%), Australia (two tenths to 6.4 %) and Israel (two tenths to 4.5 %).
At the other extreme, the unemployment rate rose by nine tenths of a percentage point in South Korea to 5.4 %, which is the highest level in that country since October 1999.
It also increased by eight tenths in Hungary (to 4.9 %), by six tenths in Canada (to 9.4 %), by four tenths in Lithuania (to 9.6 %) and Portugal (to 7.2 %), and by two tenths in Mexico (to 4.5%).
The OECD countries with the highest absolute numbers of unemployed in January were the United States (10,130,000), Spain (3,716,000), Colombia (3,434,000) and Mexico (2,480,000).
Spain, with 16%, was once again the OECD country with the highest unemployment rate in January, in the absence of updated data for Greece, which had 16.2% in November.